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Recommended for those who "enjoy" mango.

Wana Bana Mango & Banana Fruit Puree Pouch (Dollar Tree)

I already went into a lengthy introduction about these in a previous post, so let’s just skip that this time, shall we?

Here we have another entrant into Wana Bana’s line of fruit pouch purees, and it goes by the name “Mango & Banana”. Presumably because it’s a combination of mango juice and banana purees. Those clever chaps.

I guess I can’t help myself from rambling on incessantly: Even though I was greatly impressed with their “Apple & Banana” blend, I was still slightly apprehensive of this one. It’s not because of the natural disappointment I expect to feel after trying any Dollar Tree food item – the apple variety was enough to allay my fears in that regard. No, it’s because mango is like the fruit equivalent of a radioactive agent: It’s highly potent. Anyone who has ever tried the fruit can tell you that. It holds your tastebuds hostage as it pummels them repeatedly. Most fruits are sweet, with a “light” flavor. But mango hides its sweetness behind a profile that can only be described as “prickly”. It’s not bitter, and it’s not not sweet, but its tartness is overstated. It’s like the innocent-looking schoolgirl who breaks out the dominatrix outfit on your first date.

I’ve previously called it “one of the most divisive fruits out there” and that’s exactly why.

But Wana Bana’s version only proves my theory. The mango stands front and center as the dominant taste, relegating  the banana to a secondary role. Like the sidekick to the superhero. Yet even though I’m in the “pro-mango” camp, I’m not sure it’s suited enough to play the lead. The banana’s biggest contribution seems to be in the texture, as the overall consistency is akin to applesauce, typical of these pouches. Personally, I think the two flavors should have been balanced out a bit more, but what do I know? Maybe someone on Wana Bana’s board owns a mango farm, or something.

The value statements made in my previous review still apply: Namely, that the value is fantastic. While the 2.5 oz. pouch size is smaller than the 3.2 – 4 oz. standard of other brands, the $1.25 price is for a pack of three. This works out to about $.17 per ounce, which is way cheaper than name brands, and either on par with – or better than – other private labels. 

Mango qualms aside, this is still a delicious beverage at a price that’s more than reasonable. And it’s yet further evidence that you can find some healthy stuff almost anywhere you go these days.

Overall: 7/10. The mango is the dominant flavor here, which I kind of expected given its top billing in the name. However, I didn’t expect the balance to be so skewed in favor of the controversial fruit: The banana feels like it’s mostly relegated to textural duties. That fruit’s puree seems to be what gives the blend the trademark “applesauce” feel typical of these pouches. As a casual fan of mango, I liked it, but it’s not a combination that’s going to win over any new fans. Of particular note is the value: Each 3-pack of 2.5 oz. pouches is $1.25, equaling out to just $.17 per oz. This is on par with some of the best private label deals across all stores. In other words, this is a delicious product at an even tastier price, and one I would recommend. However, that recommendation only applies to existing fans of mango.

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